The start of summer is heralded by the summer solstice, the longest day of the year, June 21st. But more importantly is signals the sense of relaxation that comes with warmer weather and time off from school and work, with time spent outdoors at parks, pools, picnics, the beach, water sports, outdoor concerts, outdoor seating at restaurants, summer cocktails and frozen drinks – the overall summer vibe.
This “Summer” playlist is a compilation of songs featuring the word Summer in their title or prominently in their lyrics. Next week’s playlist will feature summer vibe songs, not necessarily including summer in the lyrics themselves, but in the feel they engender. Today’s playlist starts with The Cars singing “Summer, it turns me upside down…” and Meat Loaf’s iconic “On a hot summer night would you offer your throat to the wolf with the red roses…”. Trivia about the song and album – Todd Rundgren and Edgar Winter were contributing musicians. Other musicians on the list include The Beach Boys, Bryan Adams, Don Henley, Van Morrison, Billy Joel, The Lovin’ Spoonful, Mungo Jerry, Eddie Cochran, U2, The Who, The Doors, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Foo Fighters, Some Country artists on the list include Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley, Florida Georgia Line, Martina McBride, Faith Hill. Several memorable summer songs with a great summer vibe include:
“Summer Nights” – Olivia Newton John and John Travola from the Grease Soundtrack. A classic end of summer remembrance of summer love.
“The Boys of Summer” – Don Henley with a romp on the beach.
“Cruel Summer” – Bananarama taking us back to the 80s, with some great views of the NY Skyline, including the then relatively new Twin Towers.
“All Summer Long” – Kid Rock, gaining inspiration Bob Seger’s “Night Moves” and borrowing heavily from Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves Of London,” and Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama.” How could it not help but be a smash hit?
“All Summer Long” – The Beach Boys – from the American Graffiti Soundtrack. Such an iconic movie about Rock & Roll in the early 60s, and a springboard for Ron Howard and Cindy Williams for Happy Days, and eventually propelled George Lucas to create Star Wars with Harrison Ford again in his cast.
“Summer Breeze” – Seals & Croft, a band comprised of James Seals and Dash Crofts, both hailing from Texas. The duo was one of the most successful soft rock acts of the 70s, best known for this hit, as well as “Diamond Girl.” James Seals’ younger brother Dan was half of another successful 70’s soft rock duo England Dan & John Ford Coley, with hits “I’d Really Love To See You Tonight,” “It’s Sad To Belong,” “We’ll Never Have To Say Goodbye Again,” “Nights Are Forever Without You,” and “Love Is The Answer”. Quite a talented family. Sad to lose Jim Seals:
“Our Last Summer” – from the Mamma Mia! Soundtrack. Who wouldn’t want a summer in Greece? Such beautiful beaches and countryside.
And check out Celeste, oft compared to Billie Holiday, Amy Winehouse, and Adele, and promoted in the media by the likes of Elton John and James Cordon. Some golden oldies on the list include Natalie and Nat King Cole’s “That Sunday, That Summer,” Andy Williams’ “A Summer Place,” Frank Sinatra’s “Summer Wind,” Nat King Cole’s Those Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer”.
Let this playlist run at your picnic or at the beach. Slip on those shades. Slide into those flip flops. Lather on that sunscreen. Have fun. Kick your feet up. Relax. It’s summertime!
I hope that this music and my blog truly serve as a “revival: a new presentation of something old,” a springboard to return to the music of your youth, or perhaps to find artists you want to discover anew. Rediscover the passion of music in your life.
Live in the moment.
Enjoy the moment.
Love the summer moments
Listen to the MUSIC!